Semantic Transparency in User Assistance Systems

Andrea Kohlhase, Michael Kohlhase

In: Proceedings of the 27th annual ACM International Conference on Design of Communication. ACM International Conference on Design of Communication (SIGDOC-09) October 5-7 Bloomington IN United States Seiten 89-96 ACM Press 2009.


In this paper we analyze the problem of "situating explanations" in user assistance systems. We introduce semantic transparency as a user interface property that enables giving appropriate help. We explicate this notion in document player applications found in office suites, for example. Moreover, we show how semantic transparency can be strengthened when the underlying software is complemented by a semantic ally system. The approach consists in illustrating existing software semantically. We present some semantic extensions of office applications as examples. We also describe how the semantic transparency approach allows the exploitation of new interactions for user assistance systems.


Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Künstliche Intelligenz
German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence